Vaccine Research Center
The Dale and Betty Bumpers Vaccine Research Center, more commonly known as the Vaccine Research Center (VRC), is an Intramural Division of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, one of the US National Institutes of Health. The mission of the VRC is "to conduct research that facilitates the development of effective vaccines for human disease." The primary focus of research is the development of vaccines for AIDS, but the VRC also is working to develop vaccines for Ebola and Marburg viruses and for influenza.
The VRC is named after former Governor of Arkansas, Dale Bumpers, and his wife Betty Flanagan Bumpers, who are known for their campaigning for immunization of children. The Center was opened under the Presidency of Bill Clinton, himself a former Arkansas Governor.
In 1999 Dr Gary Nabel was named first director of the Center by Health Secretary Donna E. Shalala.
The current director of the VRC is John R. Mascola, while the deputy directors are Richard A. Koup and Barney Graham.
In July 2010, a collaboration between the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and officials at the Vaccine Research Center found that two human HIV antibodies, named VRC01 and VRC03, could potentially be used against a wide range of types and mutations of HIV in the design of a preventive HIV vaccine for human use, as well as in the formation of better antiretroviral therapy drug cocktails. The discovery, a potentially landmark one in the drive to find a vaccine for AIDS should it be validated and further improved, will be featured in the journal Science.
The Vaccine Research Center has multiple Research Laboratories (currently Viral Pathogenesis, Virology, and Immunology), and Research Sections (Humoral Immunology, Structural Biology, Human Immunology, ImmunoTechnology, Cellular Immunology, and Biodefense Research), and Programs (Translational Research, Vaccine Production, and Clinical Trials).
Notes and references
- Profile of Dale and Betty Bumpers, Vaccine Research Center website
- "Dale and Betty Bumpers Vaccine Research Center". National Institutes of Health. Retrieved 2007-04-22.
- Dr. Gary Nabel Named Director of NIH Vaccine Research Center, NIH news release, accessed 7 Jan, 2009, dated March 11, 1999